With Freedom comes Blisters

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Porthdinllaen, UK

This story begun its journey in a workshop called ‘shorelines’ led by El Rhodes. I liked the idea of using the coastline as therapy.

I push through brambles that escape like hair from a ponytail, as I tangle down the cliff path to the beach. My torchlight picks out sea glass licked smooth by the tide, tucked in baby-soft sand.
The sea meditates, waiting for me.
I tug off my trainers at the water’s edge, peeling away the price label that sticks to the tender skin of my heels. I exhale as salt-foam soothes my feet, sugar kelp slaps against the jagged black rocks and a lone gannet mews. I watch a Shore crab walk sideways.
In the precious minutes before the sun rises from its watery bed, and the digital alarm beeps a new day back in the stale air of my overfilled flat, I inhale the coastline.
Too soon my voice will be drowned out by requests: she will want to wear yesterday’s dirty clothes and eat the cereal I forgot to buy; he will tell me that I left my FitBit on the coffee table again and that my steps have been wasted.
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Sue Dawes lives in Essex with her family and is in the final year of a PhD in Creative Writing at Essex University, creating a non-binary feminist utopia. Sue has several writing credits to her name: short stories, flash fiction, and poetry, which have app...


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